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Category archives for: Eighth Amendment

Death Penalty: Now It’s Florida’s Conservative Supreme Court’s Turn To Be Accused of ‘Judicial Activism’

| June 26, 2019

Reversing the state’s retroactive consideration of certain death-penalty cases would amount to “the most egregious judicial activism in the history of Florida,” a lawyer for a Death Row inmate argued in a brief filed this week.

DeSantis Signs Death Warrant of Homophobic Serial Killer Gary Bowles

| June 12, 2019

Gary Bowles murdered six people in 1994. He is serving life sentences in the murders of John Roberts in Daytona Beach and Albert Morris in Nassau County, and is being killed for the murder of Walter Hinton in Jacksonville.

Attorney General Moody To Supreme Court on Death Row Inmates: Let ‘Em Die

| June 9, 2019

Attorney General Ashley Moody’s office is urging the Florida Supreme Court to reverse course on decisions that allowed dozens of convicted murderers to have their death sentences reconsidered.

With Conservatives In Control of Supreme Court, A 2016 Decision Reducing Death Sentences Is In Jeopardy

| May 20, 2019

The court has begun the process of reconsidering whether changes to Florida’s death penalty-sentencing system should continue being applied retroactively to cases dating to 2002.

Federal Lawsuit Targets Florida Prisons Over ‘Deliberately Indifferent’ Use of Solitary Confinement

| May 8, 2019

Florida’s prison system is “widely overusing” the practice of solitary confinement to manage inmates, sometimes locking them up in cells that are no bigger than a parking spaces over often-minor infractions, according to a federal lawsuit.

Past Prison Sentences Could Be Reduced as Criminal Justice Reform Advances at Legislature

| April 1, 2019

A bill that would give the Legislature power to decide on a law-by-law basis whether to reduce past prison sentences cleared a Senate panel Monday following tearful testimony from criminal-justice reform advocates.

After Granting Stay, Supreme Court Clears Way for Execution of Murderer Jose Antonio Jimenez

| October 4, 2018

Jimenez had cited a February execution of Death Row inmate Eric Branch, who reportedly screamed and made body movements as he was being executed, among reasons not to proceed.

Saint Kavanaugh

| October 4, 2018

Whether Kavanaugh was confirmed or not is irrelevant: whoever’s next might be less personally sleazy, more temperamentally amoebic, but judicially? Same shill, different name.

Cruel and Usual Trump

| June 17, 2018

The Trump-Sessions zero-tolerance policy of separating children from their parents at the border has no precedent except in America’s slavery times.

Federal Judge Declares Florida’s Arbitrary and Governor-Controlled Method of Restoring Felons’ Voting Rights Unconstitutional

| February 1, 2018

In a stinging blow to Gov. Rick Scott, a federal judge ruled that the governor’s near-exclusive authority to restore, and more often deny, voting rights to ex-felon is unconstitutional.

In Last-Minute Reversal, Judge Agrees To More Lenient Plea in Maria Howell Case

| January 22, 2018

After rejecting the deal last month, Circuit Judge Dennis Craig agreed to 18 months in prison for Maria Howell, who’d faced trial and possibly 15 years in prison over a molestation charge.

Appeals Court Rejects Patrick Hannon Stay, Will Be 26th Executed On Gov. Scott’s Watch

| November 8, 2017

A federal appeals court rejected Hannon’s claim that a new state death-penalty requirements relating to the unanimity of juries should be applied to his case. He murdered two men in 1991.

For David Snelgrove, Sentenced in Palm Coast Double-Murder in 2000, Execution Again In Question

| August 29, 2017

The Supreme Court threw out David Snelgrove’s death sentence as unconstitutional because twice juries were not unanimous. A re-sentencing’s complicated road began today before Judge Dennis Craig.

Mark James Asay Is Executed for 1987 Jacksonville Murders, 24th on Scott’s Watch

| August 24, 2017

Asay is the first Florida inmate to be put to death in more than 19 months and the first execution under a lethal injection procedure never used before in Florida or any other state.

Not This Time: Supreme Court Rejects Re-Sentencing For Murderer of 13-Year-Old Girl

| August 11, 2017

Hitchcock was sent to Death Row after a 10-2 jury recommendation. Attorneys argued that the new unanimity standard should retroactively apply to his case and lead to a new sentencing hearing.

Clash Continues Ahead of Aug. 24 Execution Over Lethal Injection Drug Never Before Used

| August 9, 2017

Asay’s execution would be the first carried out in Florida since a January 2016 U.S. Supreme Court decision that found Florida’s death penalty sentencing system was unconstitutional.

Florida’s “Execution Machine” Back On As Gov. Scott Schedules First State Killing In 18 Months

| July 5, 2017

Gov. Rick Scott rescheduled the execution date of convicted killer Mark James Asay for Aug. 27. The killing was put on hold after the U.S. and Florida supreme courts declared the state’s execution methods unconstitutional.

High Court Denies Challenge to Florida’s New Unanimous Jury Requirement in Death Cases

| May 24, 2017

The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision cements a state law enacted this year that requires unanimous jury recommendations for the death penalty to be considered in capital cases.

Supreme Court Orders New Sentencing of Palm Coast Double-Murderer on Death Row

| May 12, 2017

David Snelgrove has twice been sentenced to death for the murders of Glyn Fowler, 84, and his wife, Vivian, 79, on Bannbury Lane in Palm Coast in late June 2000, but never unanimously.

For Florida’s Troubled Death Penalty, Prosecutor’s Refusal to Enforce It Is Latest Challenge

| March 27, 2017

Recent studies have provided additional evidence to bolster criticism of the death penalty in Florida, which leads the nation in Death Row exonerations.

Ousted In Cop Case, Prosecutor Who Won’t Seek Death Penalty Challenges Scott

| March 21, 2017

State Attorney Aramis Ayala is accusing Gov. Scott of abusing his authority by ousting her as prosecutor in the case of alleged cop-killer Markeith Loyd.

In Stunning Move, State Attorney Ayala Won’t Pursue Death Sentences in Orange and Osceola

| March 16, 2017

Ayala’s decision infuriated Gov. Scott, Attorney General Bondi and police organizations, but drew praise from others who see the position more in line with a growing national trend by courts, some governors and legislatures.

Florida’s Lethal Injections Ready to Stab Again As Gov. Scott Signs Death Penalty Bill

| March 13, 2017

Florida is again poised to begin executions and prosecute death penalty cases after Gov. Rick Scott signed a law Monday aimed at fixing flaws in the state’s capital sentencing procedure.

Florida Senate Backs Unanimous Juries in Death Sentences

| March 9, 2017

Thursday’s Senate vote — on the third day of the 2017 legislative session — would ostensibly fix the weaknesses identified by the majority of the Florida Supreme Court with the current law.

Proposal to Require Unanimity from Florida Juries in Death Penalty Cases Advances

| February 6, 2017

But efforts to broaden the legislation to address other issues involved in a series of court rulings that prompted this year’s measure appear, at least for now, to be doomed.

Justice James E.C. Perry’s Last Dissent Denounces Florida’s Death Penalty

| December 23, 2016

Justice Justice James E.C. Perry in a blistering condemnation of the death penalty in general rendered a blistering analysis of the manner in which capital punishment is carried out in Florida.

Seizing on Orlando Murder Case, Justice Breyer Asks Court to “Reconsider Constitutionality of Death Penalty”

| December 13, 2016

Justice Stephen Breyer characterized the death penalty as cruel and unusual in light of the case of Henry Sireci, 68, who’s been on Florida’s Death Row for 40 years and has yet again been cleared for execution.

Revealed: Florida Stockpiling Lethal Injection Protocol Never Used Before, Inviting Litigation

| December 6, 2016

The new triple-drug cocktail would be the only one of its kind among the states that rely on similar procedures to kill prisoners, including a drug never used to that end before.

Florida’s Death Penalty Law in Disarray, Supreme Court Throws Out Yet More Sentences

| December 2, 2016

Signaling how it is likely to handle scores of Death Row cases, a majority of the Florida Supreme Court threw out death sentences and ordered a new penalty proceeding for a convicted triple-murderer.

In Saint Augustine, A Dead Priest Pleads for the Life of His Killer

| November 30, 2016

Father Rene Robert, who was murdered, signed the Declaration of Life in 1995: it is wrong for the state to take the life of a convicted criminal, no matter how vile the crime, and no matter how innocent the victim.

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